August 19, 2007

Death At A Funeral (08/19/07)

Lettergrade: D

Death At A Funeral received mostly good reviews, but for me it plays like a bad joke that just keeps going and going. It’s about two brothers who gather at a country house in England to preside over the memorial service for their recently departed father. One brother went off to New York to pursue his fortune as a writer, and the other stayed around to take care of his parents. There’s resentment there, etc, and general wackiness ensues.

Very little of it appealed to me. I’m not sure, but I think its due to the fact that I didn’t give much of a fuck about any of the characters. The comedic center piece is supposed to be this sequence where one of the other mourners takes some hallucinogenic pills, acts crazy, and then sits naked on the roof for a while. This tired cliche also found its way into 2002’s Orange County (among other pictures), and should really be outlawed by some kind of governmental regulation agency designed to keep lazy plot devices out of the cinema.

Oh, and the sons find out that their departed dad had a homosexual relationship with a "little person" mid-way through the movie, too. He’s played by Peter Dinklage (who has also recently appeared in In Bruges and The Station Agent) and who along with Bad Santa’s Tony Cox, continues to dominate little person acting roles in the grand tradition of Warrick Davis and Billy Barty.

The movie was directed by Frank Oz, the famed Muppeter, who has made a few good movies (Little Shop Of Horrors, The Muppets Take Manhattan, The Dark Crystral), but many more bad ones: The Score, Bowfinger, that Stepford Wives remake, House Sitter, and now this shit pile.

So that’s pretty much it. People on ecstasy, gay midget concubines, and a casket that gets knocked over at an inopportune time, causing dad’s corpse to come spilling out. I think it’s on DVD now, so in case your life is appearing too meaningful and productive, and you feel that pissing away 100 minutes of it or so would be a wise move, by all means pull the trigger on renting this fucker.

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